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Our Firm and Fund
Event Capital Partners LLC is a registered investment advisor and the general partner of our investment partnership called Event Value Fund, L.P. By design, this is our only fund.
We are purposely located away from Wall Street. We do our own research. We are investor-friendly and believe we have few peers in this regard. For example, we use an asymmetrical management fee structure. Our goal is to outperform the total return of the S&P 500 Index each year. If we achieve our goal, we earn our base management fee. If we come up short, we proportionately reduce our base management fee. We also take seriously our fiduciary duties and professional conduct, which is why we operate under the CFA Institute’s Code of Ethics and Standards of Professional Conduct.
Our Investment Style and Beliefs
We are value investors. In simple terms, this means we endeavor to invest in great businesses at favorable market prices (i.e. paying less that a dollar for a dollar’s worth of intrinsic value) and, although it is not always possible or prudent, we prefer to own such businesses indefinitely.
Innumerable factors combine to make a business great. Some factors we look for in a business include: (a) favorable industry characteristics; (b) competent and honest management that owns a meaningful piece of the business; (c) durable competitive advantage(s); (d) hidden value; (e) a catalyst that may help the market realize hidden value over time; (f) sound financials and a history of steady profitable growth; and (g) favorable long-term prospects.
Being a value investor also means that, among other things, we do not believe in the efficacy of modern portfolio theory (“MPT”) and its theoretical relatives, such as the Efficient-Market Hypothesis (“EMH”), the Efficient Frontier, and the Capital Asset Pricing Model (“CAPM”). Despite being widely taught for the past half century, practiced by a majority of industry professionals, and promulgated by the financial media, these theories are regressive, based solely on historical price (not value) movements, and have been disproven in practice. In our view, they do little more than ensure mediocre investment performance and provide job security for advisors who practice them.
Instead of popular theories, among other things, we believe: (1) markets are inefficient pricing mechanisms that result in differences between price and value ; (2) risk is not volatility, but rather the possibility of permanent capital loss; (3) preserving purchasing power and not losing money are paramount; (4) diversification is not as effective a risk management tool or wealth creation device as owning a concentrated portfolio of well-selected, well-understood investments; and (5) cash has option value in a portfolio -- i.e. it affords an investor chances to buy when others must sell.
Our Fund Manager
Our fund manager is William G. Knuff, III. Will has 23 years of experience in the financial industry, including asset management, investment banking, research, and private equity.
Prior to founding Event Capital Partners LLC in 2011, Will was managing director at Tano Capital LLC, an international private equity firm where he helped launch and manage its first dedicated India fund, the $99.6 million Tano India Private Equity Fund I. He participated on the investment committee, served as director for several affiliated Tano funds, served as head of investor relations, and served on the board of a portfolio company. Prior to Tano, Will was a principal at Sutter Capital Management LLC and Chairman/CFO of Sutter Holding Company. At Sutter, he co-managed investments in real estate limited partnerships, distressed debt, and micro-cap stocks. He also served on the board of Prandium Inc. (former parent company of restaurant chains El Torito, Chi-Chi’s, Koo Koo Roo, and Hamburger Hamlet) working with turnaround specialists Alvarez & Marsal LLC and Catalyst LLC to facilitate its reorganization, asset dispositions and eventual liquidation. Prior to Sutter, Will worked in the Mergers and Acquisitions Group at Robertson Stephens, Inc. serving clients in the biotechnology, consumer, financial services, industrial, leisure, restaurant, and telecommunications sectors.
Will graduated from Cornell University (The Johnson School) with a master’s degree in business administration, and graduated from the University of Texas at Austin (McCombs School of Business) with a bachelor’s degree in business administration. Currently, he serves as president of the Mid-Peninsula Boys & Girls Club Foundation, and as a class agent/fundraiser for his high school alma mater, Groton School. Will lives in the San Francisco bay area with his wife and two children.